Web Hosting Consumer Guide: 5 Tips You Should Know

It is very important for all websites to have good hosting. It is the foundation of your business, your brand and your website. Server downtime can potentially ruin everything that you have worked so hard to develop over the years. If you take your website and business seriously, then you need to ensure they are well taken care of.

These days it can be quite difficult to select a web hosting company, especially since we are overwhelmed constantly by all of the tempting promotions that are thrown at us by various web hosting companies. If you are searching for a good web hosting service, this article can help you with your decision-making process and help prevent you from getting swept away by all of the marketing gimmicks and tempting promotions that are out there.

The following are some basic guidelines that you can use to help you make a smart decision when choosing your web hosting service.

1. Free Domain Gimmick

It definitely sounds nice to receive a free domain. However, there are a few things you need to be aware of before agreeing to use the free domain being offered.

First of all, who owns the domain? It is free, however, ownership of the domain is retained by the hosting company. What does that mean? Either you are stuck with the hosting service forever, or you will have to pay a large sum of money in order to purchase your domain from the hosting company. What about the next couple of years of renewal? You get the first year free, however when it comes time for it to be renewed, you will be charged £15.00 or more to have it renewed. This is 200  % markup over the average cost of a domain name.

You are better off asking questions while you are doing research so that you know who owns the domain. Also, be sure that acceptable renewable fee costs are charged.

2. Separate Hosting And Domain

You don’t need to register your domain names with your hosting company. We aren’t trying to imply that the web hosting company that you are currently using isn’t trustworthy, it has more to do with locating a trustworthy and dependable registrar from the beginning. Keep in mind that your online identity is your domain name. It is the most irreplaceable and expensive asset, and hosting is just needed for accommodating your website.

Web hosting companies would, of course, prefer that your domain was registered with them. It is another profitable revenue stream for them. However, if your webs hosting company ever goes down along with your domain, that definitely won’t be convenient.

3. Read The Terms For Disk Space

People often ignore the terms disk space and bandwidth when shopping for shared web hosting. Think about what you would do if your website suddenly became popular overnight and drew in thousands or even millions of visitors. Would you be require to pay a large sum of money for the massive data transfer?

Bandwidth is one of them things which catches a lot of people out. You’ll find companies like this one who do genuinely offer unlimited bandwidth with their packes but there are also companies who will bill you for each bit of bandwidth you use over a set amount! Fortunately most of the companies who do charge tell you so before, usually via a fixed fee per 100GB but people don’t realise how fast it can creep up you on and before you know it you’re stuck with a huge bill!

Most websites of course won’t exceed their bandwidth quota just from having high traffic. However, it could potentially happen if you offer files for downloads.

4. The Unlimited Storage Catch

It seems like you are getting a great deal when you are offered Unlimited Storage, doesn’t it? Well, that is exactly what some web hosting companies would like you to think. However, “Unlimited Storage” doesn’t actually exist.

Did you thoroughly study your web hosting company’s TOS? Most people don’t carefully read it, but just scan it instead. There is a section in the TOS somewhere that will mention Server and CPU Usage. To summarise, it basically states that if your site uses more than a specific amount of storage, that it will be in violation of the TOS and is subject to termination. It is of course necessary for almost any hosting company to have something about this in the Terms of Service in order to protect their servers resources from being used improperly. Many web hosting companies are getting around the promise of Unlimited Storage through using CPU/Server Usage.

5. Research To Learn More About The Company

You can use the search query of “web hosting company name sucks” to see what is returned. You might be surprised by how many consumers have complained about the web hosting company. TrustPilot is also a fantastic way of finding a reputable host.

You might get an idea from the list, however, keep the following in mind:

The count may be unfair. Large companies have a tendency to disappoint more individuals due to having more unhappy customers. However, it still may only be a very small percentage of its overall customer base.

Subjective verdicts and bias. Sometimes statements appearing on personal blogs can be influenced, biased and very subjective. Site owners can potentially delete any rebuttals, which leaves an impression that is completely one-sided.

Complaints are quite common. It is much easier for people to complain than it is to praise. If a web hosting service performs well, it is merely doing its job.

When shopping for a web host, consider looking for one that offers updated MySQL and PHP, allows auto script installations, excellent technical support, 99.5  % uptime and supports webmail and basic web statistics support. If you can find a host providing regular server backup, private SSL certifications and restore capabilities at an affordable rate, you should then settle for its services.

Hopefully this quick and easy guide will assist you in choosing a host and we hope you’ll make the right decision!

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